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Almost everyone eats it, but it's a "breeding ground" for disease

Almost Everyone Eats it, But it's a
Fructose is not the same molecule. Glucose is a 6-member "Breeding Ground" for Disease
ring, but fructose is a 5-member ring. Sucrose (table sugar) By Dr. Mercola, fév 2012 -
is 50 percent glucose and 50 percent fructose, and HFCS is 42-55 percent fructose. If you received your fructose only from vegetables and fruits (where it originates) as most people did a century ago, you'd Evidence is mounting that sugar is the primary factor consume about 15 grams per day. Today the average is 73 causing not just obesity, but also many chronic and lethal grams per day which is nearly 500 percent higher a dose and our bodies simply can't tolerate that type of biochemical Dr. Robert Lustig, one of the leading experts on childhood abuse. Furthermore, in vegetables and fruits, the fructose is obesity, and arguably the number one enemy of the sugar mixed in with fiber, vitamins, minerals, enzymes, and lobby, has published a well written article in the prestigious beneficial phytonutrients, all of which help moderate the scientific journal Nature arguing that su negative metabolic effects. So it's not that fructose itself is He believes that the negative health effects of sugar "poisonous"—it's the biologically inappropriate doses you're consumption can no longer be ignored, any more than the exposed to that make it hazardous to your health and well- health effects of tobacco and alcohol could. According to Dr. Lustig, via the website Diet Doctor How High Fructose Corn Syrup has Decimated
Human Health
"The problem with sugar isn't just weight gain . A growing body of scientific evidence is showing that fructose can We now know, without a doubt, that it's the excessive sugar trigger processes that lead to liver toxicity and a host of content in the modern diet that is taking such a devastating toll on people's health. According to GreenMedInfo.com, scientific studies have linked fructose to about 78 different A little is not a problem, but a lot kills -- slowly." diseases and health problems. Select the hyperlinks For the first time in history, "lifestyle" diseases -- diabetes, heart disease, and some cancers -- are killing more people than communicable diseases. And treating these entirely preventable illnesses costs more than one-seventh of the U.S. GDP. It stands to reason then that simply preventing these diseases could save the US health care system around One of the primary, and likely most effective ways of preventing these diseases would be to curb the outrageous Dr. Lustig rightfully argues that sugar used to be available to our ancestors only as fruit or honey—and then only for a few months of the year—compared to today, when sugar (primarily in the form of high fructose corn syrup) is added to virtually all processed foods and drinks; even items you normally would not think of as being high in sugar. Tragically, many even contain more than 50 percent sugar! "Nature made sugar hard to get; man made Fructose is NOT the Same as Glucose
Glucose is the form of energy you were designed to run on. Every cell in your body, every bacterium -- and in fact, every living thing on the Earth -- uses glucose for energy. High fructose corn syrup (HFCS) was invented in Japan in 1966 and introduced to the American market in 1975. Food and beverage manufacturers quickly began switching their sweeteners from sucrose (table sugar) to corn syrup when they discovered that high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) could save them a lot of money. Sucrose costs about three times as much as HFCS. HFCS is also about 20 percent sweeter than table sugar, so you need less to achieve the same amount of sweetness. In the mid 1970s, dietary fats were blamed for heart disease, giving rise to the "low-fat craze," which resulted in an explosion of processed nonfat and low fat convenience foods—most of which tasted like sawdust unless sugar was added. Fructose was then added to make all these fat-free products more palatable. Yet as the low-fat craze spread, rates of heart disease, diabetes, and obesity skyrocketed. Clearly, there was a major flaw in the plan, and it's not difficult to see that trading fat for sugar is not a wise move. The problem is that excessive fructose consumption leads to insulin resistance, and insulin resistance appears to be the root of many if not most of the diseases listed above. Insulin resistance has even been found to be an underlying factor of recommend this lower level of 15 grams a day simply because if you consume processed foods or sweet beverages How Fructose Increases Insulin Secretion and
at all, you're virtually guaranteed to consume "hidden" Worsens Your Insulin Sensitivity
sources of fructose that can have a major impact on your Interestingly, recent research published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences shows that fructose can When I have mentioned this in the past many people have activate taste cells found on your pancreas, a reaction that strongly disagreed with me as they believe fruit is fine can increase your body's secretion of in. And, while because it is natural. And it may be ok for some people, this is of particular concern for people prone to diabetes, if especially those doing long and intense exercise sessions. statistics are any indication, this could include virtually However, there is an easy way for you to find out your risk. If your uric acid is above 5.0 would be wise to follow the rule. The higher above 5.0 your uric acid is, the worse your risk At present, one in four Americans already have either for damage. If your uric acid is between 3.5 and 5 you should or some form of diabetes, and type 2 diabetes is be fine. I believe I must have a genetic polymorphism for directly linked to your diet, so anyone on a high-fructose diet uric acid as mine is always above 5.5 even with intense exercise and less than five grams of fructose a day, so I In this study, the researchers were able to demonstrate that fructose activates the same proteins in your pancreatic cells The authors of that paper offer an in-depth review of the that your tongue uses to taste sweets. And when these cells many health hazards of fructose, due to its pro-inflammatory are exposed to both glucose and fructose, they secrete more insulin than they do when exposed to glucose alone. "Accumulation of AGEs has been found in healthy aging persons, and this accumulation is higher during high "Most sugars join the [metabolic assembly line] at a point glucose concentrations. Microvascular and macrovascular where a supervisory enzyme can control the flow of goods. damage, seen in diabetes, is attributed to the accumulation But fructose comes in farther down, where it can lead to an of AGEs in tissues, but it is also associated with overproduction of fat. And because fructose . doesn't atherosclerosis, Alzheimer's disease, end stage renal stimulate the same insulin response that glucose does, the disease, rheumatoid arthritis, sarcopenia, cataracts, and hormone isn't doing the other regulatory things it usually other degenerative ophthalmic diseases, Parkinson's does, like moderating appetite." disease, vascular dementia and several other chronic Limiting Sugar is Also Vital for Longevity
diseases. For instance, Bar et al. have demonstrated By increasing your insulin and leptin levels (and differential increases of AGEs products in Alzheimer's subsequently decreasing receptor sensitivity for both of these dementia and vascular dementia compared to controls. It vital hormones), excessive sugar/fructose consumption not has also been suggested that AGEs are involved in the loss only increases your risk of type 2 diabetes, it also accelerates of bone density and muscular mass associated with aging." aging in general. In fact, limiting sugar in your diet is a well- How to Tame Your Sugar Cravings
known key to longevity, because of all the molecules capable If you're struggling with sugar addiction, I recommend of inflicting damage in your body, sugar molecules are trying an energy psychology technique called , which has helped many "soda addicts" kick their sweet habit. Two years ago, the journal Nutrients published an excellent If you still want to use a sweetener occasionally, here's what report on the impact of fructose on aging. is a particularly potent pro-inflammatory agent that creates advanced glycation end products, commonly known as "AGEs." AGEs are a complex group of damaging compounds that form when sugar reacts with amino acids. Besides oxidation, glycation and the subsequent formation of AGEs is one of the major molecular mechanisms causing ongoing damage been touted as a healthy alternative by many, but don't fall in your body, which leads to disease, (premature) aging and, for it. It's a highly processed sap that is almost all fructose, eventually, death. According to the authors: "[T]he data are supportive that endogenous AGEs are References:
associated with declining organ functioning. It appears that dietary AGEs may also be related. As of today, restriction of dietary intake of AGEs and exercise has been shown to safely reduce circulating AGEs, with further reduction in oxidative stress and inflammatory markers." In short, if you want to live a long healthy life, you need to restrict your consumption of sugar, particularly fructose. As a standard recommendation to limit glycation, I strongly advise keeping your TOTAL fructose consumption below 25 Most people would be wise to limit their fructose to 15 grams or less however, especially if you have elevated uric acid This Popular Drink May Be Almost as
levels, which can be used as a predictor for . Hazardous to Your Health as Soda
This includes keeping track of your fructose intake from whole fruits. To evaluate the fructose content of many Dr. Richard Johnson is the chief of the division of kidney Dr. Johnson suggests that the ideal uric acid level is probably disease and hypertension at the University of Colorado, and around 4 mg/dl for men and 3.5 mg/dl for women. author of The Sugar Fix, one of the best books on the market This is actually the only major biochemical marker that I need to optimize at this point in my life, which most likely As one of the physicians on the cutting edge of sugar suggests that I am particularly sensitive to fructose intake metabolism research today, his focus is on how the and that it’s best for me to keep my levels as low as possible. overabundance of sugar in the American diet -- This is most likely due to genetics and would explain why particularly fructose -- is causing obesity, hypertension, most of my paternal relatives have, or have died from, diabetes, and a number of other health problems. diabetes. That side of the family is most likely particularly The answer to the question in the headline is fruit juice. But before I explain why fruit juice may be as hazardous to your So I would STRONGLY encourage everyone to have their health as soda, let me first give you some background uric acid level checked to find out how sensitive you are to fructose. (I’ll discuss this strategy further, in just a moment.) Fructose has become one of my newest health passions for a As you know, two-thirds of the US population is overweight, number of reasons. It is really not well understood how and most of these people likely have uric acid levels well pervasive a negative influence this sugar has on people’s above 5.5. Some may even be closer to 10 or above. health, but even more importantly, it is something that we can easily change, by influencing the food industry to Dr. Johnson has developed a program to help people optimize their uric acid levels, and the key step in this program is complete elimination of fructose. One of the leading researchers in this field is Richard Johnson, MD, who is the chief of the division of kidney Results of the Latest Clinical Trial
disease and hypertension at the University of Colorado. I’ve previously interviewed Dr. Johnson about his research into “We’ve just finished a clinical trial where we gave a low the health dangers of fructose, specifically how fructose fructose diet to overweight and obese adults from Mexico causes high blood pressure, obesity, and diabetes. Here, we continue this discussion, and Dr. Johnson also “We tried two different low fructose diets, but first, before shares new details of the research he’s been involved with we go into that, we think that the effects of fructose are independent of its energy intake. So,table sugar (sucrose) -- An interesting aside is that at the end of this interview, I was which contains fructose and glucose -- although there is a very pleasantly surprised to learn that I had written some of caloric component, we think that the effects of fructose are the articles on fructose that he reviewed when he first not specifically related to the calories but rather to its mechanism, of which uric acid is a driving part. It really gave me great joy to know that all the hard work and … [Uric acid levels] being too high seems to really increase effort I have put in over the years really is making a the risk for diabetes and high blood pressure, kidney disease difference, not only getting people healthy, but also and obesity. And in fact, there are more and more papers motivating high integrity scientists to do the right thing. It is worth noting that Dr. Johnson actually endorses One of the questions that Dr. Johnson sought to answer in his latest trial was whether or not you need to reduce ALL to us getting to know each other, but I recently sent him my fructose in your diet, or just reduce the fructose primarily in added sugars like high fructose corn syrup and table sugar. artificial sweeteners. He’s a true physician and was eager to After comparing the two low fructose diets -- one that was review the material and update his knowledge on the subject. strictly low fructose, and the other that had low fructose but There aren’t many doctors out there with this type of allowed natural fruits – they discovered that both diets had integrity. I really like Dr. Johnson and believe he’s an remarkable effects in reducing metabolic syndrome. authentically well-intentioned good guy. Both diets improved triglycerides, insulin resistance and blood It is not often that a health researcher can open up my eyes to a completely novel and new risk factor for health, as he did with uric acid and fructose, and I will always be grateful A Novel Idea -- Using Uric Acid as a
to him for that and for his willingness to enlighten us in Marker of Susceptibility to Fructose
Damage
Uric Acid as a Marker for Fructose
Going back to the issue of genetic variability, it seems that Toxicity
some people may be able to process fructose more efficiently, and the key to assess this susceptibility to fructose damage One of the surprising facts discussed in our first interview lies in evaluating your uric acid levels. was how detrimental the impact of fructose is on your uric Dr. Johnson agrees that using uric acid levels as a marker to acid levels. It appears as though that process is essential to identify your susceptibility could be a reasonable approach. the damage that fructose causes, and it’s actually an So, for example, if you’re passionate about fruit and typically excellent marker for toxicity from fructose. eat large amounts of fruit, but have a uric acid level above 5 According to the latest research in this area, the safest range (or better yet, 4 if you’re a man, and 3.5 if you’re a woman), of uric acid is between 3 and 5.5 milligrams per deciliter, and then you may want to consider lowering your fruit there appears to be a steady relationship between uric acid consumption until you’re able to optimize your uric acid levels and blood pressure and cardiovascular risk, even down levels. “We have some evidence from our laboratory that uric acid actually regulates the sensitivity to fructose,” Johnson says. “So the higher your uric acid, the more sensitive you are to the effects of fructose. … So I agree with you. If you measure your serum uric acid and it’s very significantly high, you probably will get into more trouble with fruit juices and large amounts of fruit That seems to be the take home message from our current Revisiting Fruit Consumption
So it appears as though whole fruits, even though they
contain fructose, may not be nearly as problematic as fructose from added sugars. One of the reasons for this is believed to be because whole fruits contain high amounts of natural antioxidants, as well as other synergistic compounds that may help counter the detrimental effects of fructose. “When I originally wrote my book, I was concerned that if you eat large amounts even of natural fruits you could get into trouble,” Johnson says, “and I have had cases where people were eating very large amounts of natural fruits. When I cut it out or reduced it, they’ve had dramatic weight loss. So I’ve had a number of people like this who are eating almost a pure fruit diet, and I don’t think that that’s particularly good, but I think that the normal individual eating two to four natural fruits a day probably is going to be fine.” The key here though is WHOLE fruits, but I still remain convinced that many people, especially those that have insulin resistance, such as those with: should be particularly careful about limiting their fructose How to Know if Fruit May Be a
Problem for You
However the NEW appreciation is that if you have your uric acid level checked and have a level of 4 for men, or 3.5 for women, you probably are at a very low risk for fructose toxicity and can be more liberal with these limits. The higher your uric acid though, the more you need to limit or even avoid fructose until your uric acid level normalizes. Serving Size
Fructose
What About Fruit Juices?
Fruit juice typically contains very high concentrations of fructose, which will cause your insulin to spike and may counter the benefits of the antioxidants. Previous studies have already clearly demonstrated that drinking large Children are at particular risk here, since so many children are given juice whenever they’re thirsty instead of plain For example, research has revealed that 3- and 4-year-olds who carry extra weight and drink just one to two sweet drinks a day double their risk of becoming seriously We are now studying it and we do think that there is an When buying commercial fruit juice, you need to check the We don’t know how important it is yet, but we do know that label, as the majority of fruit juices contain high fructose you can make fructose from glucose, especially if you’re corn syrup and artificial flavors in addition to concentrated diabetic or if you’re severely insulin resistant. Since a lot of people who are very, very overweight and are But even freshly squeezed fruit juice can contain about eight trying to lose weight, some of them can be insulin resistant. full teaspoons of fructose per eight-ounce glass! This does throw a new twist into the story… We’re trying to Naturally, some fruits are less problematic than others, as the amount of fructose and antioxidants vary from fruit to But certainly if you’re not insulin resistant, dextrose or “For example, pear juice and apple juice are very, very low According to Dr. Johnson’s data, which he claims is in vitamin C but very, very high in fructose,” Johnson says, “unequivocal,” starch and dextrose (glucose) do NOT cause “ and so those particular kinds of juices maybe worse than obesity or diabetes, whereas fructose does. orange juice or grapefruit juice which have high amounts of Interestingly, animal studies have discovered that if an animal eats lots of fructose, over time they become diabetic. Now, apples contain other compounds like quercetin, which Part of this process, however, is that once they become is an antioxidant that may block some of fructose’s effects. insulin resistant, they activate the polyol pathway and begin So, you know, the verdict is still out in terms of which juice to make fructose from other sources of food as well! is better and which juice is worse. This is quite remarkable, and a strong testament to the need But in general, with apple juice and pear juice, I would be more concerned about those types of juices because they are It’s also offers an explanation for how and why the obesity very, very high in fructose and relatively low in epidemic has flourished the way it has since the introduction of HFCS into most of our processed foods. For all these reasons, it is wise for most to limit their intake “It’s a little bit more complicated than we had originally of fruit juice, especially if your uric acid is above the ideals thought,” Johnson says, “but the bottom line is: If you’re trying to avoid gaining weight; if you’re trying to avoid If you suffer from any of the four health problems I just becoming obese or diabetic, the best thing you can do is to listed above, you would be best off avoiding fruit juices cut back on foods that raise uric acid, particularly sugar, altogether until you’ve normalized your uric acid and insulin fructose and high fructose corn syrup (HFCS). That’s by far the best approach. Starch in general appears to be safe unless you’re severely insulin resistant, in which Is Glucose a Safer Alternative
case perhaps isn’t quite as safe as we had originally Sweetener?
Although you cannot buy “glucose” commercially, it’s available under the name of “dextrose.” Defining Insulin Resistance
It’s relatively inexpensive, priced at about a dollar a pound. Ideally you’ll want to have a fasting insulin level below 2. In It’s not as sweet as table sugar or fructose, but it also doesn’t addition, Dr. Johnson recommends using a simple glucose seem to cause the same health problems – at least for those who are not diabetic or insulin resistant. “The fasting glucose, under 100, suggests that you’re not insulin resistant,” he says. “If your fasting glucose is between 100 and 125 mg/dl, you probably are insulin resistant to a “It is absolutely true that if you take a laboratory animal mild extent, or you have impaired glucose tolerance. and you feed it glucose or dextrose or starch, it will not get into trouble. It will stay skinny. It will stay healthy. Rice You have what we would call mild insulin resistance and diets are high in starch and historically have been slightly elevated glucose levels for what you would expect.” I agree with Dr. Johnson that this is typically true, however In contrast, if you give sugar or fructose to an animal, it’s still possible to have low fasting glucose yet have they’ll rapidly develop features of metabolic syndrome, obesity, and so forth. And you can pair-feed animals, so one Dr. Johnson explains: “Yes, if you have hyperinsulinemia, in animal gets exactly the same number of calories as the general what happens is that as you become insulin other one, but it’s only the sucrose- or sugar- or fructose-fed resistant, your insulin levels go up to help keep your blood animals that develop the features of metabolic syndrome. sugar down. So if you have a particularly robust insulin This makes one believe that starches safe, and this is in fact response, you could keep your glucose in the normal range Now, as we’ve done more studies, (obviously if you’re a So, in this case, you’re essentially pre-diabetic and need to diabetic, glucose is not good because in diabetes you cannot take steps to improve your insulin sensitivity, and the most handle glucose metabolism)… one of the things that we’re potent way is to reduce or eliminate fructose. just discovering in the laboratory -- actually it’s been known but we’re trying to figure out how important it is -- A Word on Agave
people who are diabetic, and people who are severely insulin resistant… can make fructose from the glucose I got a lot of push-back after I published my report on agave, through a pathway called “the polyol pathway.” which many health conscious people believe is a safe, all- natural, healthy sweetener. However, agave can contain anywhere between 55 to 90 percent fructose! Some companies were very upset with our article and refuted the information so much so that we actually purchased three of the most popular “natural” agave products and had them independently tested, at our expense, at a commercial laboratory. The results came back last week and they support what I said, that they were high in fructose. The range was 59 to 67 percent fructose. I am in the process of writing an entire report on it that should be published in the next few weeks. Fructose content is also high in honey, which contains about 70 percent on average. In addition, many, if not most of the commercial supplies of agave are processed in a way that’s not too dissimilar to the processing of high fructose corn syrup. “We have not done any specific research with agave or with honey,” Johnson says. “But I do believe that those two compounds, because they’re so high in fructose, probably will engage the same pathways that we see when we give fructose or sugar to animals. So I would not recommend those as sweeteners to use daily.” Learn More…
I strongly recommend you listen to this interview in its
entirety, or read through the transcript. In it, Dr. Johnson also discusses the potential benefits, as well as the risks, of using the drug allopurinol (traditionally used to lower uric acid levels in patients with severe gout) to treat heart disease, diabetes and even obesity. We also discuss the lifestyle adjustments that can work together synergistically to optimize your health benefits, and delve into two additional studies that Dr. Johnson recently submitted to Science, and Nature. Hopefully they will be accepted for publication by both of these prestigious scientific journals. I have written about the dangers of sugar for a long time, and of course, variables like exercise and calorie intake play a role in obesity, but I am fully convinced that if we can educate the public about the primary role fructose holds in creating obesity, we can actually reverse and eventually help to eliminate the obesity epidemic. So please, keep learning, and keep sharing this information with your family and friends. I also highly recommend reading Dr. Johnson’s book, solution to several devastating health problems. Although, as I stated earlier, he supports the option of using artificial sweeteners which I do not recommend. The trend will not magically reverse itself – it will require each and every one of you to become educated, savvy consumers, and it will require that you bring back home cooking; using fresh, whole, organic foods.

Source: http://liege.mpoc.be/doc/alimentation/-sucres/-~En-anglais/Mercola_AlmostEveryoneEatsIt_fevrier2012.pdf

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